Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Departmental Honors




A recent book written by Tom Standage pays homage to six drinks that helped shape the history of the world. Following his discussion of the first five drinks (beer, wine, spirits, coffee and tea), Standage concludes with what he calls, the drink of the twentieth century. "Coca-Cola encapsulates what happened in the 20th century: the rise of consumer capitalism and the emergence of America as a superpower. It's globalization in a bottle," Standage said in an interview with National Geographic News (Handwerk). Today Coca-cola is everywhere from Cuba to the Czech Republic (Standage even claims the drink is in more countries than the United Nations). It comes as no surprise that, in the midst of global expansion, the company needed to translate their brand name palatably in each language they encountered. According to Barbara Mikkelson, when Chinese shopkeepers first received shipments of the drink, they created nonsensical transliterations of the brand name using some of the nearly 200 characters that can be used to create sounds similar to Coca-Cola. Some of these signs, when translated back into English, meant roughly, "wax-flattened mare" or "female horse fastened with wax."



Faculty Mentor

Christine Cooper

Departmental Honors Advisor

John Mclaughlin

Capstone Committee Member

Li Li